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June 3, 2008

Mixed bag: Win something, lose something, and more pics


Before I get started with my laundry list, I wanted to show you a picture of my city as seen from the bus window this morning. I love June Gloom. Here in Los Angeles we don't get real "weather" in any meaningful way, so we have our own weather, like fire season and mudslide season and earthquake weather (total fiction, by the way) and my favorite -- June Gloom. In May we also get the occasional May Grey, it's all the same. The onshore flow of low-lying clouds gives us weather which other folks in real parts of the world would call "overcast." But we call it June Gloom, and it gives a maudlin cast to the skyline and it keeps the city cool in the mornings. And Lord knows I like cool weather!

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1) Update: Today's giveway has ended

Edited to add: Hi everyone and thank you so much for all the hellos and comment-entries but I started being scared we were about to break the server again at any minute. So the sweepstakes is closed BUT a new VERY BIG book giveaway is coming tomorrow and is also way more organized. Thanks!! Today's winner announced tomorrow!

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2) Plus win even more books
Later on in the week, which may or may not be "tomorrow" depending on if I can get my ducks in a row, laundry finished, etc., I'll fix the enter-to-win form so ya'll can be eligible to win a big huge stack of awesome books I picked out at the book expo. I will probably have to mail them by pony express though because of this:


Actually I saw it for $4.45/regular at the Thrifty station near my house and I yelled out the window to no one in particular, "That is so NOT the definition of Thrifty!" But anyway, you won't have to drive anywhere to get free books, I will send them right to your doorstep. So that is coming soon.

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3) I love sweepstakes
One day if I do this often enough every person who has ever read this here site will win something .... my friend Allison is also giving away BEA books, so go run over there and win a few! Allison also runs the Super! SuperCrafty.com online craft store and has come up with a just-in-time-for-summer craft give-away that is so awesome, we're going to do that mid-month but I just wanted you to know we have gone give-crazy over here in Chez Cat Hair & Pals. I also amended my seven-months-of-no-shopping in the gift arena, I love giving gifts and because they don't clutter up my house (ha!) I can still buy gifts for others. A lot of folks emailed me similar things, like how they plan to cut back on clothes, but still buy books (you know I support that 100% because, hello, someone has to buy my book, right, and one day buy Sobakowa's Manifesto!) and some people said, "Good for you but if I can't buy yarn is there a purpose to life?" which I also understand. Ya'll crack me up.

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4) Speaking of books
Thanks to one of my eagle-eyed commenters who let me know that my book is currently the NUMBER ONE BESTSELLER in the category of... um... Men's Hair Loss:


It seems my knitting, drinking, cat-loving ways have made men lose their damn hair! Luckily, there are several patterns for hand-knit hats in the book so I guess there's a connection after all...?

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5) Mas fotos, por favor...

This is Jose:

Jose is cute (and married, before you start with the questions) and he smells good and he was a good sport and actually danced with my no-rhythm self at the party on Friday. He also sent me the only picture taken all weekend of me and Kim, who is not just my publicist but my friend and lets me talk her ear off on a regular basis about my Cancer angst:

Hello, we be drankin'!

By the way, notice the pink? Not just in my wine-cheeks this time! I took a risk this year and I wore color on both days instead of my usual head-to-toe black, which worked out OK but still there was some nervous sweating in the pittage area. Actually when I get nervous and anxious I sweat everywhere, it's just delightful. Someone was telling me I should get Botox for sweating but how would that work since nervous sweating is like a hot flash, it comes on all at once and takes over my whole body. It would be more Botox than I think is probably healthy. It's much better to stay home and be with my cats and just be a hermit most of the time and thereby avoid the stressful sweaty times, don't you agree?

But in the end I feel secretly very happy that I left my house and did all this stuff, not just this past weekend but everytime I manage it. I dread it beforehand and I panic a little, but then when I'm on the spot and have to work, I think I do ok. I say some dumb stuff and I'm awkward but at least I didn't chicken out, at least I showed up and did my best.

Things have changed a lot in the past year in a good way. Some of that is because going to events and meeting strangers is no longer all so new and unknown, and of course there's the beta blockers for the flight-or-fight anxiety, but I think in many ways I'm just less critical of myself than in the past. I used to re-hash every conversation for hours, beating myself up for the dumb stuff I said, or for misspelling someone's name, or not remembering a name, or for tripping over my own shoes (which I did once again this year IN THE BOOTH in front of 200 people. Awesome!) (But whatevs. They were cute shoes, so there.)

When I had that meltdown in the Nashville airport it kind of started something in me where I just let go. Let go of my fear and anxiety of never measuring up, let go of my dire people-pleasing expectations, and finally let go of trying to be anything to anyone. It's a process, I still have my people-pleasing pile of crap I lug around, but it's not the sole purpose of my life anymore. You can't please people all the time. It's a totally empty goal because you always fail. All I can do is my best and you know what? Doing your best really is good enough.

Even if your best is a little sweaty around the edges.

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6) And finally, a bumper sticker I can get behind


Oh yeah, I am SO with you on that one!!!!

(Comments are now closed, thank you everyone!)

Posted by laurie at June 3, 2008 9:03 AM